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Last Updated: Tuesday, 23 January 2007, 10:26 GMT
World Heritage support for wall
The Antonine Wall
The wall stretches from Bo'ness to Old Kilpatrick
A landmark representing the most northerly walled frontier of the Roman Empire has become the UK's official nomination for World Heritage status.

The Antonine Wall runs 37 miles from Bo'ness, near Falkirk, to Old Kilpatrick in West Dunbartonshire.

The announcement was made by UK Culture Secretary Tessa Jowell.

Conservation body Unesco, which is responsible for the scheme, will examine the proposal and make a final decision at a future date.

The bid has been supported by five local authorities throughout central and the west of Scotland.

'International dimension'

The wall was built in about 140 AD to keep Pictish warriors out of the Roman Empire after the conquest of southern Scotland.

It became a monument to the reign of Emperor Antonius Pius but was abandoned after just a generation, in about 165 AD.

Ms Jowell said: "The Antonine Wall is one of the UK's most important Roman monuments and a fascinating part of our European heritage.

"It is this international dimension that is most exciting to me."

If accepted by Unesco the wall will join the list of 27 UK World Heritage Sites.

Scottish Culture Minister Patricia Ferguson said: "The Antonine Wall is significant not only as a visible reminder of one of the most powerful states that the world has ever seen, but also as part of a great network of frontiers which the Roman Empire constructed in order to protect itself."

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